first_imgPhoto: Primary school aged children enjoy a game of silent touch football as part of the Silent Sport Challenge. (ABC News: Mark Moore) Touch Football Australia CEO Colm Maguire said one in six Australians dealt with a hearing impairment.”It is unusual because of that lack of communication that is verbal, more looking at each other, having to utilise different ways of communicating,” he said about the game.Mr Maguire said there was no barrier to participation whether players were hearing impaired or not. By Adrienne Francis (Courtesy of ABC)Photo: Chloe Nash says the only thing that you are doing differently is communicating differently. (ABC News: Adrienne Francis) Check out the TFA video below, demonstrating there are no barriers to participate in Touch Football. Related Links2016 Silent Sports Challenge A unique game of touch football is closing the divide between the hearing and silent worlds. The Silent Sport Challenge began in 2011 and gives those with hearing the chance to experience what it is like to play the game without sound.Players wear ear plugs and instead of communicating with whistles and referees use flags to signal players.Twenty-nine-year-old Canberra woman Chloe Nash, who was born with profound deafness, has been playing touch since she was nine.”The only thing that you are doing differently is communicating differently and that you just need to break through other peoples prejudices, other peoples barriers that they are creating for you,” Ms Nash said.Ms Nash wants hearing health and wellbeing listed as one of the 10 national health priorities to attract and allocate funding to improve access to childhood Auslan education, increase availability of interpreters, improve captioning services and target specialised mental health and aged care.”It is not just Canberra, although we are in dire need. It is all over Australia,” she said.”Deaf people suffer from isolation and that impacts on their mental health.”Long-term exposure to excessive noise means the number of Australians who are deaf, hearing impaired or hard of hearing is continuing to increase.Game raises awareness of disability that affects millionslast_img read more